Ibrahim Ethem Haciosmanoglu, president of Trabzonspor, and several members of his board have been given handed suspensions after he ordered a referee to be locked in the dressing room at the club’s stadium.
Haciosmanoglu was unhappy with Cagatay Sahan’s decision not to award his team a penalty late in last Wednesday’s 2-2 draw with Gaziantepspor and ordered Sahan and his assistants to be locked in overnight. They were released when Turkey’s president, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, intervened.
“I told stadium security not to let the referees leave until the morning, until I arrived, but a very important person called me and asked me not to cause embarrassment in Turkey and around the world,” Haciosmanoglu told the Dogan news agency at the time.
He later claimed that he locked the men in for their own safety. A statement, on Tuesday, read: “Our goal was to protect the referees from the crowd in Trabzon. We also arranged for the referees to leave the city without any problems.”
The Turkish Football Federation was unconvinced and announced Haciosmanoglu had been suspended from carrying out his official functions for 280 days and fined 150,000 Turkish lira (£34,250).
The club directors Yakup Aslan and Ali Uzunay were given bans of 410 days, while Koksal Guney, Omer Demir, Ali Kemal Basaran, Onur Incehasan, Seyfettin Tayfun Kahyaoglu and Mehmet Terzi were banned for a year. All eight were fined amounts between 200,000 and 260,000 TL (£45,000-£60,000). The club was ordered to play two matches behind closed doors.